6 reasons to spend your spring break in Lake Geneva this year.

Bear with us. We know that the phrase “spring break” likely conjures sandy beach scenes complete with the gratuitous consumption of piƱa coladas beneath the restful shade of a palm tree. But if you haven’t planned a trip by now, it’s probably too late to go through the hassle of booking a flight, not to mention buying sunscreen and dusting last year’s sand from your beach bag. But it’s not too late to book a last-minute trip to a closer locale. Enter: Lake Geneva.

At only about an hour’s drive from the Milwaukee metro area, Lake Geneva is a surprisingly perfect choice for off-the-ball spring breakers or those looking to save money. You could hop in the car right now and be there in the time it would have taken to price check flights to Cancun. Here are 6 reasons to spend your spring break in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin this year:

Riviera Beach

Being a lake and all, Lake Geneva does have a beach. Riviera Beach might be a more hoppin’ place in the middle of July, but it’s a beach nevertheless. Even if you can’t strip down to your swimsuit or soak up any rays, a walk along Riviera Beach, especially at sunset, is pretty much a must-do during any trip to Lake Geneva.

Studio Winery and Geneva Lake Brewing Company

Given the fickle and uncharitable whims of spring weather in Wisconsin, you might need an indoor activity or two on your itinerary (and a beer coat). Studio Winery is a self-proclaimed “urban winery,” that’s “one part art gallery, one part recording studio & 100% delicious!” We haven’t double-checked their math, but we never say no to a wine tasting. If beer is more your speed (and we’re guessing it is, if you’re making the short trek from Brew City), be sure to stop at Geneva Lake Brewing Company for some beer flights, too. 

A great dining scene

Enjoy the view from Pier 290 and tell yourself you’re at an all-inclusive resort, surveying the tropical surf. Sopra Bistro is another cozy spot with plenty on their menu to entice out-of-towners. After dinner, do your own Lake Geneva cocktail crawl using VISIT Lake Geneva’s specialty cocktail guide.

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Canopy Tours in Wisconsin?

It’s no Costa Rican rain forest, but we would argue that the rustic, wintry vistas Lake Geneva has to offer are just as easy on the eyes. Visitors can soar or climb through the trees with Lake Geneva Canopy Tours, which also offers a high ropes course. 

The Yerkes Observatory

Science! We bet you didn’t know that the largest refractor telescope in the world is located right here in Wisconsin. Catch a public tour of the 100-year-old Yerkes Observatory, known as the birthplace of modern astrophysics. You won’t see any celebrities but you’re sure to spot some stars. [Editor’s Note: the Yerke’s Observatory is now closed.]

Timber Ridge Lodge & Waterpark at Grand Geneva 

It wouldn’t be a Wisconsin staycation without a visit to a waterpark. Inside Lake Geneva’s Timber Ridge Lodge & Waterpark is a veritable deluge of enticing activities from heated water slides to a 50-foot lazy river.